The Appropriation of YouTube for the Social Construction of Casual Knowledge through Life-Hack Videos
Kate, F.J.B. ten
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YouTube contains a wide variety of tutorial videos wherein individuals present a certain expertise. Among these tutorials are life-hack videos that regard the presentation of an atypical practice. Uploaders construct a life-hack narrative and share this through a YouTube video page. These life-hack videos can be considered as narratives, as they consist of multiple narrative units that are chronologically ordered. Through storytelling, uploaders are able to logically convey an atypical practice to an audience. By structuring knowledge in a narrative form, viewers are able to encode the narrative sequence and form a mental representation in memory. Subsequently, viewers form an interpretation of the meaning that is shared through the narrative. The comment section allows individuals to express their interpretations and participate in the sharing of understandings. The process of presenting life-hack narratives and expressing understandings on a YouTube life-hack video page constitutes the social construction of casual knowledge. How this specifically is achieved is examined through a textual analysis of the content from three life-hack video pages. By analysing the narrative structure of life-hack videos, an understanding is formed about how knowledge is embedded within a story. The textual analysis of comments allows for the identification of interpretive frameworks that frame the narrative of a YouTube life-hack video page. Eventually, this paper describes how casual knowledge is socially constructed through the reinforcing presence of uploader, cognition and commenters.